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Tumblr Delete-Proof Posts Caused by Data Corruption

By - Source: TechCrunch | B 3 comments

Yikes! A problem with Tumblr's infrastructure has generated random posts on blogs, including porn.

With the amount of GIF images flashing away on the popular blogging site, it's no wonder Tumblr suffered an infrastructure failure on Wednesday. That's the official word from a Tumblr spokesperson after reports began to surface both on Twitter and Tumblr blogs that random posts began popping up that were not published by account owners. These mystery posts ranged from harmless messages to nudity to hardcore porn.

"Earlier this morning, an infrastructure failure lasting roughly fifteen minutes led posts created in this window to become corrupt," a Tumblr rep told TechCrunch. "No data was lost, but this has been causing inconsistent behavior for these affected blogs. Our engineering team is working quickly to correct the situation."

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The problem was presumed to be related to hacking, as many Tumblr users were unable to log into their account and remove the mystery posts, or found their dashboard to be "broken". Threat Track Security noted that many of the unauthorized posting was related to pornography, a subject Tumblr owner Yahoo! recently tried to clean up but was met with some resistance by the site's millions of blog authors. Thus, it was believed that the "hacked" blogs on Wednesday were a form of protest.

But Tumblr shot down that theory, reporting that "our engineering team is working quickly to repair an issue causing incorrect posts to appear on a small number of affected blogs." The site was reportedly down early Wednesday morning for around fifteen minutes, and many users are reporting that Tumblr didn't publicly respond to the issue until 12 hours after the first complaints. So far the company hasn't provided an ETA on the fix.

Foe whatever is going on with Tumblr's infrastructure, the results can be damaging for some users. Tumblr is notorious for its heavy load of not-safe-for-work content, thus the glitch is causing some of that content to spill into blogs maintained by teens and adults who typically avoid posting that kind of content. Now imagine those bloggers with Facebook and Twitter sharing switched on, and those random NSFW blogs automatically popping up on the social networks.

Yahoo! completed its acquisition of Tumblr back on June 20, a deal that would see Yahoo!'s personalization technology and search infrastructure deployed across the blogging network to help users discover creators, bloggers, and content. "Tumblr can bring complementary content to Yahoo!'s media network and search experiences," Yahoo! stated. "Yahoo! will support Tumblr's efforts to create advertising opportunities that are seamless and enhance the user experience."

Part of that strategy is convincing advertisers to create their own Tumblr blog and posts in an effort to monetize the Tumblr user base. Yahoo! has implemented features that place branded content in user searches and dashboards, but nowhere near adult content. But having that questionable adult material threatening to flood legitimate advertiser blogs could be bad business for both Yahoo! and Tumblr.

That said, this new "glitch" may cause Yahoo! to double its efforts in making Tumblr a more family-friendly portal. The company has already made porn entirely unsearchable both within Tumblr and via the Web, thus new users can't find adult content while current users who are following adult blogs will only be able to find additional material by clicking on linked posts in their stream.

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  • 4 Hide
    Spooderman , August 21, 2013 1:54 PM
    That site is just pure evil....this was bound to happen eventually
  • 0 Hide
    John Bauer , August 21, 2013 10:01 PM
    This happens on 4chan all the time...
  • 1 Hide
    DeizelVolt , August 21, 2013 10:05 PM
    Eh the whole site ain't even that good anyways full of hipsters and whiners
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